Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Duck Pond Cellars, Dundee, Oregon

On my trip to Dundee, Oregon, we stopped into visit Duck Pond Cellars, on of the regions largest wineries. Arriving onto the grounds in late Fall, you could see the remains of the once beautiful rose garden that has been encroached upon by the ravages of the approaching winter.

Entering the well appointed tasting room and gift shop, we were greeted by our hostess who invited us to a tasting and enlightened us about the winery. The flight included their 2005 Riesling and the 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon. Then our hostess put two glasses on the table and gave us a side by side tasting of their 2006 Pinot Noir ($20) and their Pinot Noir St Jory Vineyard ($40).

The 2006 Pinot Noir is blended from grapes sourced from their Washington and Oregon vineyards. It was a bright and alive wine with cherry, strawberry, cloves and licorice with a good dose of acidity to make it crisp. A fairly good wine for the price.

Then I evaluated the Pinot Noir St Jory Vineyard and I finally got what Pinot Noir is all about. This wine was floral, spicy and rich with fruit and wood notes. Smooth tannins with a little less acid than the 2006. This was Heaven in a glass. I think I finally get Pinot Noir after this side-by-side comparison. The St Jory Pinot Noir is sourced from their vineyard in the hills south of Salem.

I saw that they also had a 2004 Barbera. Because they did such a great job crafting the other wines, I asked for a sample. It was excellent Barbera and my mother thought so much of it, she procured a bottle. Good job, mom.

If you are headed to Dundee, I would suggest a stop at Duck Pond Cellars. It was a fun tasting, the staff is friendly and the wines are excellent.